Can America Do More To Prevent Terrorism

    Terrorism is one of the most crucial global issues of today with recurring reports of terrorist attacks to America and other countries.  It was the September 11, 2001-attack to World Trade Center, in New York, which momentously threatened the world with terrorism since its intense destructive effects killed thousands of innocent people and afflicted enormous economic losses in U.S.  The incident, as the most devastating contemporary terrorist attacks, has paved way to stressing and imposing strict government regulations and prohibitions concerning national security and defense in the states and across the world, and most importantly, implementation of more preventive measures against these vile acts of violence.  However, with the persistent ruthless attacks, despite constant aggressive and intelligent strategies of government to combat terrorism, major predicaments on realism of avoidance are apparent which concerns on means and potential of America to whether pursue more or clearly obstruct protective tactics.  This article will compare Americas ability to further avert the negative effects of terrorism as opposed to its failure and incompetence to prevent due to certain factors, and also conclude a better approach in dealing with terrorism.

Motives of Terrorism and Counterterrorism Acts

    Motives of terrorism differ, but the most common three reasons behind these terrorist attacks were opposition to American neocolonialism and imperialism, that started after the WWII, as Europe lost its power and so the former gained western power and wealth which greatly influence and operate political and business interests around the world secondly, opposition to Zionism and Americas prevalent support of Israel, at the expense of other Middle Eastern neighboring countries as Palestine and lastly, the most recently, their own religious beliefs which pertain to execution of jihad or holy war of those claiming to be religious leaders as Osama Bin Laden (Piszkiewicz 127).

Despite different motives, variety of policies and lines of attack against terrorism were initiated by recent government leaders of America.  In the comparative report of Zalman and Clarke, The Global War on Terror A Narrative in Need of a Rewrite, they showed the following provisions of past and present governance.  Starting with the Clinton administration, due to rising threats and operations of terrorism, increased presidential and police powers improved counterterrorism activities and resources of FBI and CIA and better capability to detect subversive communication under electronic surveillances were his first legislative actions of counterterrorism U.S.  On the contrary, during Bushs regime, the incidence of September 11, 2001-attack in his first year has led the former president to use a more aggressive offensive approach as he announced a global war on terrorism through use of military forces which invaded Afghanistan and Iraq on the succeeding years.  While the current administration of Obama has set new light in dealing with terrorism as it uses diplomatic relations in communicating with the Muslims, a non-violence and hatred war on terror and clear recognition of a battle against appalling terrorist organizations.
Further Elimination of Terrorism

    Preventive strategies against terrorism of governments goals in safeguarding national security and assistance with the oppressed nations threatened by rebellious organizers across the world are essential in achieving freedom for mankind.  According to Former U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft, in his article, Reflections on Events and Changes at the Department of Justice, he concluded that
Security is the most important means to achieve and enhance the values of liberty and freedom. It is the purpose of security to enrich freedom, not counterbalance it. Security is not pursued to constrain liberty rather, it is employed to protect it. I do not believe that fighting terrorism aggressively and protecting civil liberties are mutually exclusive goals. We must not underestimate the threat of our enemies, but must never go beyond the limits of the Constitution in countering it (813).

This idealism has helped Ashcroft and his subordinates in Justice Department and law enforcement team in their efforts to pursue further prevention against terrorism, which in effect no other attack succeeded and destabilized America under his organization after the destruction of the WTC in 2001.  Other deterrence tactics that the department used in opposition to terrorism were also mentioned in Ashcrofts report such as restructuring the overall capabilities of FBI to prevent attacks, being the worlds leading forensic investigative organization tracking down and taking apart the monetary sponsors and alliances of terrorists improving and strengthening immigration reinforcement and seeking modern tools and technology required by law enforcement.

    Increasing oil prices, exploring other outlet for oil production, based on Losmans Do We Have the Will Taking the Fuel out of Terrorism, and seeking alternative fuel sources aside from oil (Kass 131), will help reduce the revenue funding and financing of international terrorists from the Middle East, as the worlds leading oil producer and supplier thus, control in market demand and supply of oil by America, with its economic power, is considered as a preventive measure against future proliferation of terrorists.  President Obama also believed in this ideology, in his senatorial speech on energy independence in 2006, he stated that
 Our enemies are fully aware that they can use oil as a weapon against America. And if we dont take this threat as seriously as the bombs they build or the guns they buy, we will be fighting the War on Terror with one hand tied behind our back.

Another reform to a more precautionary scheme is a call for a centralized and consistent alert system to combat the prevailing decentralized and complicated terrorism, for instance counterterrorism task forces should operate on regional and local areas nationwide to uncover and minimize threat levels (The Washington Times A18).  Further, other preventive strategies on terrorism that can be done were also discussed in the former newspapers article, Preventing the Next Attack What America Can Do from This Day Forward (A17), such as governments protection to the telephone companies and Internet service providers which helped the National Security Agency intercept suspected terrorist communications thorough control on borders, open seas, airports especially those who are getting in and out of the country effective action against recruitment of terrorists to prison inmates detection and deletion of international websites also used for recruitment by terrorists and effective training of fully equipped-task forces.

Moreover, a unified nation with great allies and powerful conviction in its extreme ability to struggle is U.S. strongest defense against terrorism, aside from its preventive and aggressive approaches.  It was strongly believed by Tony Blair, former U.K. Prime Minister, during his speech to U.S. Congress, in his support against terrorism

 This is a battle that cant be fought or won only by armies. We are so much more powerful in all conventional ways than the terrorists, yet even in all our might, we are taught humility. In the end, it is not our power alone that will defeat this evil. Our ultimate weapon is not our guns, but our beliefs.  

Failed Anti-terrorism Efforts
Due to several failures of anti-terrorism and counter-terrorism efforts of the government, many perceived that America can not prevent terrorism as supported by the fact that terrorism plots continue to grow despite any preventive and offensive strategies.  This is cited in the report of Carl Conetta, War  Consequences Global terrorism has increased since 911 attacks, a study financed by the US Department of Homeland Security, made by the Rand Corporation for the National Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism (MIPT), that for the period January 1998 to August 2006 shows the terrorism incidents rate grew by 250 for the 59-month period following 11 September 2001. It is inconsistent with what Ashcroft, as claimed in his report earlier, that there was no single attack that has occurred after the said WTC destructive incidence. 
Moreover, it is the unconventional nature of modern terrorists as Al Qaeda which makes their activities harder to uncover and foresee, like the one that made the September 2001-attack possible and since these organizations have no territory to defend, they may be invulnerable to the usual preventive diplomatic and military tactics (Yoo 793).

America can absolutely do more in preventing terrorism not only in the states, but also across the world at large, with the use of both preventive and offensive approach.  Terrorist attacks by international and domestic groups to any nation are always inevitable due to growing multicultural differences, racial discriminations, imperialism, colonialism and other threats to global and national security and independence.  However, giving up the fight against terrorism is not the way out as it will merely worsen the situation since terrorism is a risk and threat to economic and global stability, development and harmony of present to future generations, especially if pertinent prevention and elimination processes will not materialize before long. 
I think by taking precautionary measures such as educating the people on destructive effects of terrorism respecting other nations culture, religion and interests that are non-violent and non-abusive seeking alternative sources of fuel to impede relentless financial funding and channels of terrorists from the Middle East, being the worlds leader in oil production and employing past experiences in fighting terrorism strategically and improving intelligence expertise, we are able to battle terrorism and at the same time, gain ultimate freedom.  Though, I dont believe on hostile and forceful courses of plotting and initiating war to stop terrorism as it violate human rights and kill innocent lives, I commend American government resolute and firm actions on creating allies with other countries and humanitarian organizations sharing the same intent in addressing issues on terrorism implementing legal procedures without violating the constitution or relatively modify laws to an impartial prosecution and judgment investing on effective training and intelligence of military and law enforcement forces to combat in the event of terrorist assaults rather than directly invading sleeper cells which would only sacrifice many soldiers and promote warfare taking advantage on technological advancements for operational surveillances and promoting counterterrorism efforts such as conventions and visiting forces in other states especially those under control of terrorist groups by now.  Thus, I believe that both assertive prevention and uncompromising vigilant offenses of national and world government leaders are both essential in exterminating global terrorism.


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